No, Megan Thee Stallion Isn’t a “Fake Anime Fan”

Then, there’s the fact that there’s actually nothing worth faking an interest in anime for.

Aside from one small merch collection, people that act like Megan is wearing nerdiness for some social media or financial gain have missed the point. It’s not even her entire concept to set it up as something she’s doing for marketing purposes. Oh, and she’s not talking about her crush on Inuyasha because she thinks that’ll get her a boyfriend, that’s for sure. What does she gain from flaunting her fandom that’s worth the rage and rudeness from anime fans everywhere? Why can’t she just vibe in anime Twitter spaces while being hot and Black?

Every single time that folks are reminded that Black women, in particular, may like nerdy things like anime, a rush of people trying to defend “their” thing from outsiders quickly follows. Fear of “fake geek girls” comes from an inability to share “your” toys with people you think don’t deserve them. In the case of Megan and other Black girl anime fans across the internet, it’s the belief that they visibly don’t belong to the fandom spaces; that there’s only so much oxygen in the fandom, and that anyone who isn’t like you is wasting a precious resource. To men, and some women with internalized misogyny and what I like to call Lone Geek Girl syndrome, Black girl nerds are the ultimate “fake geek girls” because we really don’t look like the ideal image of anime fans in the United States. I know this because I lived it.

I was subjected to knowledge tests, questions about (official) merchandise purchases, and demands that I, a supposed interloper to nerdy spaces I’d been part of since I could be trusted to go to a comic book store on my own, proved that I belonged.

When I used to go to comic conventions, I always had to provide my “nerd cred.” As if cosplaying at a convention and actually going to panels and networking wasn’t enough. When I’d meet a new group of anime-invested friends, there was always that introductory pop quiz of “what do you like, why do you like it” delivered by men who always made it clear that no matter what answer I gave, it would always be the wrong one. Even when I was in graduate school working on my thesis about the Joker and was known as “the comic book person” in the English department, that didn’t stop nerds in my program from trying to prove I didn’t belong or that I must have been faking my knowledge.

That’s why I will always be bitter when I see tweets like this one about Megan: “Megan doesn’t give a f*ck about anime, or manga. She’s just another clout chaser, using the hobby to get ahead in her grift.” For someone like that, there’s nothing Megan can do to prove that she is an actual anime fan and has been one from a very young age. There’s no point where she can be authentic to their nerd experience or what they think a “real” anime fan should look like.

What stands out is that these fans don’t do this for anyone else. The fans making tweets claiming Megan, or any other Black woman with even an ounce of internet presence, are faking being a nerd on main “for clout” are definitely not chastising male rappers for their oftentimes surface-level nerdy references.

When male rappers like Lil Uzi Vert or Kanye West reference anime, they find their lyrics or music videos formative. That’s fine. It’s accepted. When Megan calls herself Todoroki Tina on main and does an entire photoshoot for Paper Magazine cosplaying her favorite My Hero Academia character, she must be faking it.

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